Board and batten siding can add character and charm to your home. It’s a look that works with many designs and adds curb appeal. If you’re considering re-siding your home, you may wonder if board and batten siding is available in vinyl. We have the answers you seek, so keep reading!
Board and batten siding is commonly available in many different materials. Vinyl is one of the most commonly available materials, a list of which includes:
- Fiber Cement
We discuss vinyl board and batten in more detail below and explain some of the reasons it may be a good option for your home. We’ll discuss the cost and installation process -so, let’s get started!
Vinyl Board And Batten Siding
Board and batten siding consists of wide vertical planks with narrower boards over the seams between them. Think about old barns you may have seen, and you’ll have a good idea of the look. In fact, it is sometimes referred to as barn siding. But it has also become a popular and stylish option for homes.
Board and batten siding is a great option if you are tired of the more typical vinyl or wood lap siding. If your neighborhood is full of homes clad in lap siding, stucco, or brick, board and batten can make your home stand out. The popularity of board and batten continues to grow, and it’s available in various materials. Vinyl is one of the most common, and it is the siding of choice for many people.
Pros Of Vinyl Board And Batten
- Low cost
- Insect proof
- Won’t rot
- Low maintenance
Cons Of Vinyl Board And Batten
- Susceptible to storm damage
- Can crack in cold climates
- Less fire-resistant than some other materials
- Visible horizontal seams possible if more than one run of siding is required
With the pros and cons considered, many people choose the vinyl board and batten over the other materials. Part of the reason is the low cost compared to some of the others.
Price Per Sqft.
- Vinyl: $2 to $5
- Wood: $3 to $6
- Steel: $3 to $8
- Fiber Cement: $1 to $5
These prices above don’t make vinyl appear much cheaper, but this doesn’t include the installation cost.
Installation Price Per Sqft.
- Vinyl: $1 to $2
- Wood: $2 to $4
- Steel: $3 to $5
- Fiber Cement: $3 to $5
When you take these numbers into account, the vinyl is cheaper than the other materials. While the installation cost for vinyl is fairly consistent, many installers have wildly varying costs to install other materials. Part of this is because of the added difficulty to install them. Many say fiber cement board and batten are especially difficult, and the installation prices for it tend toward the higher end of the range.
Vinyl has other benefits over the other materials than the cost to purchase and install. Some of the other options need a lot of maintenance. Wood and fiber cement needs to be repainted every few years, and steel can rust and fade. Steel and fiber cement are very heavy and difficult to install.
On the other hand, steel and fiber cement are less likely to crack from cold. Wood will withstand impacts from hail and debris during heavy storms than vinyl will. Vinyl can warp from heat over time in particularly hot climates, while the others won’t.
All factors considered, vinyl is still an attractive option for most people. It’s cheaper to purchase and install, won’t fade, and can improve the look of your home.
How Do You Install Vinyl Board And Batten Siding?
The process for installing vinyl board and batten siding is a bit different than for other materials. For vinyl board and batten, you need to:
- Prepare the surface by installing furring or sheathing
- Install corner posts
- Install J-channel along top and bottom
- Place J-channel around windows and doors
- Rip end pieces to fit
- Install siding panels
This is for a standard wall. You follow the same process for gable ends, but you also must trim at the proper angle for the roofline.
1. Prepare The Wall
For vinyl board and batten siding, you need a firm, even surface to nail to. On new homes or existing homes with plywood siding, this may already exist. But in most cases, you need to install horizontal furring strips every twelve inches or solid sheathing to provide this surface.
2. Install Corner Trim
It is important to install outside and inside corner trim before the siding with vinyl since the siding slides into it. To attach corner trim, nail at the topmost slot’s top edge, then in the middle of the slot every twelve inches on down.
3. Install Top And Bottom J-Channel
The bottom of the lower J-channel should sit 1/4 inch above the bottom edge of the corner trim. Snap a baseline to ensure you have a straight line. Before you attach the trim, be sure to drill 1/8 inch holes at least every two feet to allow water to seep from the bottom of the J-channel. You should cut one inch from the face of the J-channel at the end so that it can slide into the corner trim piece.
If you are installing a new soffit with your siding, you should do that before installing the top J-channel. Otherwise, install an inverted J-channel at the top of the wall, trimming the ends as you did on the bottom.
Any place on the top or bottom where two J-channel pieces meet, you need to trim away a portion of the nailing strip so that the pieces can overlap. They need to overlap at least 3/4 inch.
Make sure to fasten all J-channel pieces by nailing through the center of the provided slots. This allows for expansion. You should place a nail about every eight to twelve inches.
4. Install J-Channel Around Windows And Doors
You need to install J-channel around all sides of any windows or doors that your siding will sit against. Using the same procedure from the previous step, place a J-channel across the top of the window, and inverted beneath the window, and vertically on either side. The top and bottom pieces should extend the window’s width, plus the width of the side J-channels.
5. Rip End Pieces To Width
When you install vertical siding like this, you want to create a balanced look. In most cases, you will not be able to use only full-width panels; you have to trim the last one to fit. Rather than cut only at one end, you should balance the look by trimming the last plank on either side. For instance, if your wall is twenty-five 1/2 panels wide, use 1/4 panel on each end with twenty-five full panels between them.
6. Install Siding Panels
Start on one side and work your way across. If you begin with a partial panel, you may need to create locking tabs along the trimmed edge so that it locks into the side trim. You do that with a snap-lock punch, like this one:
Malco Snap Lock Punch
To install the siding panels, slide them into the trim’s tabs, then place a nail at the top of the topmost slot. Nail in the center of the slot every twelve inches from there down. Complete the process by proceeding with the next panel, locking it into that one, and nailing it along the nail-edge in the same manner.
Remember to leave a 3/8 inch gap at the bottom, where the panel slides into the J-channel. This is for expansion. At the top, you should leave about 1/4 inch for the same purpose. The front edge of the J-channel will hide these expansion joints.
That’s the basic process. If your home is more than one course high, you can split the wall in the middle by installing an inverted J-channel for the top of the bottom run of siding, with a J-channel facing upward directly against the top of it to accept the bottom of the upper run.
You can see a similar installation here:
How Much Does Vinyl Board And Batten Siding Cost?
Vinyl board and batten siding typically costs $2 to $5 per square foot. This does not include the cost of installation, which adds $1 to $2 per square foot. There may be other costs involved as well, such as adding insulation if you want to raise your home’s R-value at the same time.
When you install siding, there is always a small amount that is trimmed from the ends or unusable for other reasons. Many installers recommend figuring around 10% over your square footage for that reason.
Given that, a typical 2,000 square foot. home, will range around $6,600 to $15,400 for siding and installation. This does not include added costs for odd-shaped homes or other difficulties particular to your house. It also doesn’t account for such things as disposal costs, so always allow extra room when planning your budget.
What Is The Width Of Vinyl Board And Batten Siding?
The most common width of vinyl board and batten siding is in the seven to eight inches range. We’ve found some manufacturers offering it in widths up to twelve inches. While a variety of widths are available, the most common sizes tend to be the most affordable.
Board and batten siding can add a unique look and appeal to your home. One of the most common materials it is made in is vinyl, which has some advantages and disadvantages compared to other materials, as we’ve explained above. Most people who install vinyl board and batten siding are happy with the durability and the way it beautifies their home.
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